Cliche yes, but let's talk about goals. A new year is upon us, and we all know that's the ONLY time you can set goals. Just kidding.
But - have you taken a moment to think about what you'd like to accomplish this year? We're not only talking about running/fitness. What else do you want to achieve this year?
Sometimes setting goals can be hard. We have an idea of what we want, but how do we get there? Is the goal too lofty? Is it too easy? Is it financially or emotionally feasible? Will you have the support of your spouse and family?
Think about your goals. What is is that you really want to achieve? Think hard - get to the root of your goal. Why do you want to achieve it? How will it benefit you? Will it benefit others? What steps will you need to take to reach it?
How big is your goal? Will it take several years to reach it, or is it attainable in a few months?
Write it down. Make a list of your goals and the steps you'll take to reach them. Make copies. Don't just leave it in a Word Doc on your computer. Hang it on the fridge. Put a copy in your car. Throw one in your gym bag and stick one on the bathroom mirror. Be reminded daily of what you want in life.
Here's a few examples
GOAL: To sub 2:00 in the half marathon
GOAL: To drop 30 seconds off my 5k time
GOAL: To earn a promotion at work
GOAL: To become leaner and stronger
GOAL: To read more literature.
Team up with someone who has similar goals. Uh hey - us!!! The Fit Club! That's what we are here for. Your goals don't have to be identical. Maybe your goal is a 2:00 half, and the goal of your teammate is a 2:10 half. That's okay. Maybe you're training for 26.2 and your buddy is working on speed to drop their 5k time. That's great! You can keep each other accountable and make sure you're both at the 5am workouts. You can coax each other out the door when Netflix sounds better, and you can meet up for workouts, even if you're not on the same training schedule.
Track your progress. Write down how you're doing. Keep a log/journal/etc. Seeing how you are progressing helps make the goal seem attainable. Plus, as you look back at the progress you've made, you'll have something to be proud of. When you see that on Week 1, you did 8x400m repeats in 1:24 and then you see that on week Week 13 you did 16x400 in 1:22, you'll be proud.
There are several good options for training journals and software, but a notebook or Excel work like a charm as well.
Check out the Believe Training Journal (you can find it on Amazon or via Oiselle). We also like the Garmin Connect software or TrainingPeaks.
Visualize your goals. What does running a 2:00 half look like to you? What does it feel like when you cross that finish line? What does obtaining your PhD look like? How will it feel to have those letters behind your name? What does losing 15 pounds look like? How will you feel when you can wear your coveted jeans again? What does helping start a new non-profit look like? What does volunteering at the animal shelter 3 days a week look like? Think about these things as you work toward your goal. See yourself once you've achieved the goals.
Remember that failure is okay. This doesn't mean you should give up when the going gets tough. It only means that sometimes, we don't reach every goal we set on the first try. In fact, sometimes we try and try and try and still don't reach our goals. That's okay too. "Failing" at something doesn't make you a failure. Use your failures and learn from them. Failure is one of the best teachers. So, be flexible. If your goal is to nail a 5k PR at ShamRox in March and it doesn't happen, you're not a failure. Learn from what went wrong, keep working, and try again. Maybe your goal was to run your first marathon in April, but you got hurt. That's okay! Pick a different race and try when you're healthy! Your goal may take months, it may take years. But keep working. Perhaps you'll never reach your goal - but it sure as heck will give you something to work for.
Take it slow. Rome wasn't built in a day, and you're not going to drop 10 minutes off your half time in a matter of weeks. It's going to take work. Trust the process, and give it time. Also, don't expect results if you don't put in the work.
This is why tracking your progress is important. You might include photos as your track your progress of your body, your running watch (time/workouts, etc), places you run, etc. All of these visual aids will help you as you move forward.
Be realistic. Yes - we all love to dream big. But sometimes, we set goals that are unrealistic for ourselves. Here are a few examples of unrealistic v. realistic goals.
1. "The farthest I've ever ran is 3 miles at 15 minute pace, but I want to nail a Boston Qualifying marathon time next month" - this is pretty unrealistic. Something like this takes a lot of time, training, and dedication.
2. "I just started running and I want to complete a 5k 6 months from now" - this one is realistic. The time frame is adequate, and the person realizes it will take time.
3. "I work 60+ hours per week, volunteer at 3 organizations, hit the gym 5 times per week, and take care of my family. I want to enter an accelerated masters program to finish in half the time." - is this a good idea? If you become tired and burnt out, not only will those you care for begin to suffer, but your mental and physical health will suffer as well.
4. "I want to lose 10 pounds over the next 4 months. I have started exercising, eating healthier, and being more active in general." - this one is realistic (depending upon the weight of the person at the beginning). The person has an idea of what will help them reach their goal, and the time frame is adequate.
Be supportive of the goals of your friends, family, and teammates. Sometimes it's hard for us to realize that not everyone likes the same things we do. What are the goals of your family and friends? Even if you don't understand why someone likes to do 'x', support them. They probably don't know why you'd want to get up at 5am to do speedwork. Help those you love reach their goals. Be supportive and helpful.
It's okay to take a break. Feeling burnt out or worn down? Take a breather. We all need rest days. Stay focused, but allow your body to recover and heal. By taking a break every once in a while, you stop yourself from becoming obsessed, and you're actually better able to reach your goals. That being said, you don't need a break every other day. If you do, perhaps you need to re-evaluate your goals.
Be consistent with your training, though. Taking breaks is important, but don't let "rest days" become a habit.
Believe you can do it. If you think you can't do it, then you won't be able to. Tell yourself you're capable of running a sub 20 minute 5k. Tell yourself you can run that sub 2:00 half. Tell yourself you can make it through vet school. Tell yourself you can get into that masters program. Tell yourself you can get that goal pose in yoga class. Tell yourself you can lift that much weight or do that many pull-ups. Then - work for it.
So - what happens when you achieve your goal? Remember this - the achievement of one goal is just the starting point for the next.
Sometimes our goals can be scary. Take that fear and use it for your benefit.
So - set specific, realistic goals. Find a buddy and keep each other accountable. Track your progress, and visualize what your goal looks like. Remember that it's okay to fail, and that it's also okay to take a break if you need it. Life happens, and no day is perfect. Stay focused on what you want, and stay accountable to yourself as well. Work hard, and when you reach your goal, we'll be here to celebrate with you and help you set your next one.
Let's look at some examples:
General Goal: To lose weight
Specific Goal: To lose weight by incorporating more protein and vegetables into my diet and by eating healthy meals at home at least 5x per week.
General Goal: I want to start a business
Specific Goal: I want to begin selling my art on Etsy
General Goal: I want to exercise more
Specific Goal: I want to run at least 4x per week and attend 1 class at my gym each week
General Goal: I want to find a new job
Specific Goal: I enjoy helping others, and I would like to find a new career in the non-profit realm.
Keep in mind that your goals should motivate you. You should get excited when you read your goal sheet. They should make you want to work, and you should be over the moon when you achieve them. If you dread working toward your goal, you need to rethink.
Remember, life isn't about perfection. It's about effort. When you begin implementing that effort into your life each day, that's when you begin to grow. That's where transformation and change happens. So, keep working and never forget why you started.
Here's to making 2016 your best year yet. Cheers.
Merry Christmas! We hope you are enjoying a fabulous day with your family and friends. We hope it's been a safe, relaxing, enjoyable day for you and your loved ones. Maybe you're volunteering today, or maybe you're playing with your new toys. Maybe you're doing both! Whatever you're doing, we want you to know how grateful we are for each and every one of you.
Thanksgiving isn't the only time to be thankful and grateful for what we have. Each of you contributes something unique to the team that has helped us grow. You all possess different strengths, weaknesses, and passions. Your differences are what make us such an incredible team. You have helped us learn how to be better coaches, and you've inspired us in more ways than you know! So today, we want to say thank you to each of you for something a little different.
Angela: Thank you for your drive to work harder, run faster, and try new things. This reminds us that no matter what, life is an adventure and that we should always strive to be better and stronger.
Angie: You're a veteran runner, and you know your stuff. You can teach us all a thing or two. Thank you for being here to help motivate the team. Your sparkle is contagious, and we are grateful to have you. Not only do you work incredibly hard, the team truly looks up to you. Thank you.
Ashley: You're an inspiration to everyone, but especially to the mothers. You recently had a baby, and look at you. You just ran a 15k and you're training for another! By the way, we saw your goals sheet - we know what you're up to next! We'll do whatever we can to help you reach each of your goals.
Casey: Thank you for not being scared to join us. Thank you for reminding us that sometimes you have to step out of your comfort zone and try something new if you want to improve.
Debra: You're a workhorse. You work hard every single week. You ask questions, and you implement the suggestions into your training. Thank you for showing us that hard work pays off, and for keeping an open mind.
Donna: Thank you for showing us patience. We know this hasn't been an easy road with your injury, but you remind us that sometimes, we have to take a break and let our bodies heal. That being said, you're still there - cheering us on, riding your bike, etc. We appreciate you, and can't wait until you're running with us again.
Glenda: We are so glad to have you. Thank you for not be afraid to join a group of what you considered to be "younger" people. You show up, and you give it your all even when it's tough. You asked for a training plan to help you get in more miles and get faster at the same time. This shows us how much you want this. Thank you for reminding us that when you really want something, you have to be willing to put in the effort to reap the results.
Heidi: Thank you for showing us that even if you have to work at 5am, you can still get your workout in. You remind us that you don't always have time for everything in life, but that you have to make time for the things you care about. Congrats on completing your first 26.2 this year!
Jani: Boston bound! Congrats to you on this amazing accomplishment. We are fortunate to have you, and we are thankful for the wisdom you bring to the team. We know that not all of our training will work into your Boston plan, but we are here to support you, and we'll be cheering you on all the way through Bolyston street! Thank you for showing us that putting in hard work is what truly helps us achieve our dreams.
Jody: You've been with us from the start, and no matter how you're feeling, you still work your butt off. You've had a very busy and trying year, yet you're still there on Wednesday mornings putting in the work. Your dedication is contagious.
Katie: Thank you for the encouragement you give to other runners. We know the workouts are not always easy, but we appreciate you building up your teammates along the way. It means a lot to hear "good job" from your coach, but sometimes, it means even more to hear "good job" or "you can do it" from your teammate.
Keshian: Thank you for your sense of humor. You are our favorite T-Rex. You bring the fun out in everyone, and you are a true joy to have in the group. You keep a good sense of humor even when the going gets tough, and you never cease to make us smile. Thank you for that.
Laura: Thank you for reminding us that you don't always have to follow the crowd. Almost everyone is training for 13.1 or 26.2, but you know what you want - you want to drop time off your 5k. It's nice to know that those longer distances aren't the only thing that matter. Sometimes, runners are made to feel that if they don't run marathons, they're not real runners. Thank you for reminding us to go after what we want in life, even if it's not what others are doing.
Lendall: Oh Lendall. Thank you for helping us to remember to pack our shoes. But really - thank you for giving it 100% ever single week. Thank you for your fun sense of humor, and thank you for giving Nick a buddy.
Magda: You work hard. You're one determined lady, and we love that. You started in group 3, and now you're moved up to 2. You set lofty, yet achievable goals - we like that. After all, what's the point in a goal if it's super easy? That being said, you also put in the work every single day to meet those goals. Thank you for exemplifying hard work. Your sub 2 is waiting. Go get it.
Malinda: When we say jump, you ask how high. You are willing to do everything you can to make each of your workouts count. We've seen it during practice - if we say "come on, Malinda" you go, and you go hard. Your drive is inspiring.
Melissa B: You are one of our favorite examples of what hard work and training can do. Look at your half marathon PR! Look at where you started and where you are now. If any of you ever wonder if speed work really works, or maybe you start to discount your training, look at Melissa. If you ever think to yourself, "I can't do this" - look at Melissa.
Melissa N: You're a very busy lady. We admire the way your care for your family and others with such grace and poise. That being said, you're always the first to ask for the workout if you can't make it on Wednesday morning. You'll text us a screenshot of the treadmill at 8pm that night when you finished the workout. You show us how to balance a busy life, hectic family schedule, and training plan at the same time.
Nicole: Thank you for being the first to say "I want to work harder" - even if it means putting in extra time/miles/workouts. You show us that true motivation must come from within.
Sharon: Thank you for showing us that even after time off, you can still be an incredible athlete. You are getting faster and stronger, and it's because you work hard. We have noticed incredible progress from you, and we are proud to call you a teammate.
Merry Christmas to each and every one of you. Thank you for helping us build an awesome team. We are excited to see where the future takes us.
As we come up on the new year, we would like to hear your suggestions about what you would like to see from TFC. There is always room for improvement. How can we better serve you, and our community? How can we continue to grow and still provide quality workouts? Let us know your thoughts.
We have a few ideas in the works to help promote the club, but we want to hear what you have to say as well. Email us us at firstname.lastname@example.org
We missed you this week (12/23), but we needed to keep safety in mind with the weather. We will not meet on 12/30. So, enjoy your "time off" and we will see on you January 6. It's the perfect time to bring a friend!
Oh - if you want some workouts, here you go:
Week of 12/21 (Workout for 12/23): 16x200
Week of 12/28 (Workout for 12/30): 3 min on; 1:30 easy (8 sets)
Have a fantastic weekend!
This time of year can be stressful, and sometimes a little overwhelming. Plus, there are cookies everywhere. They magically appear at every inopportune moment, and the closer you get to Christmas, the tastier the cookies become. The cookie fairy works overtime during December making sure every sprinkle is carefully placed and that each cookie is perfectly iced. Between the parties, the cookies, the concerts, events, and shopping, the holidays can become a bit much.
So, take a moment this week to thing about a few things:
1. What are some of the things you're grateful for in your life?
2. How can you bring a smile and a bit of happiness to someone today?
3. Remember this: you don't always know what's going on in the lives of others. Be patient, be kind, and be loving.
4. How can you give back to the things/people that give so much to you?
Now that you're relaxed, grab a cup of coffee (and a cookie) and let's talk about running :)
We started the week off with a fun group run to look at Christmas lights and enjoy hot chocolate. Thank you to Magda for allowing us to use her home. We greatly appreciate it.
Thank you for coming and for bringing your friends. Looking at the lights was fun, and Nick learned that 5 scoops of hot chocolate mix is too many. Spending time with TFC athletes is always guaranteed to bring a lot of laughs!
#WorkoutWednesday was all about 400s. We rocked 10-12 400m repeats and noticed some really big improvements from some of you!
We also noticed a few things and wanted to give you a few tips/things to work on:
1. Look up - keep your head up. When you look down, it becomes harder to breathe, and keeping your eyes up allows you to focus on what is ahead. Plus, it strains the back of your neck when you're constantly looking down.
2. Keep your arms down - stay relaxed. When you bring your arms up and start crossing them in front of you, you're wasting energy. You'll have to consciously think about this until it becomes a habit. Not sure, if you do this? Look at your running photos and also make an effort to think about your form next time you run.
3. Control your breathing
We had a fun weekend of racing! Lendall, Malinda, and Jody did Run for the Ranch half in Springfield on Saturday. Jody came home with a big, shiny PR!
Jody: 2:02:42 PR
On Sunday, Angela did the Santa Hustle half in Galveston, and also walked (or ran) away with a PR!
Angela: 2:24:04 PR
We know the holidays can be a hard time as many are out of town. We will meet on 12/23 at Harke, but we will NOT meet on 12/30. Enjoy a week off, and we'll hit it hard on 1/6!
If you have friends that are thinking of joining us, we would love to have them. There's nothing to be scared of. We will happily modify the workouts for those who are just beginning. Bring them along on 12/23. It's going to be a fun workout/game.
Also - we know many of you ladies will do some after Christmas shopping. We will do another gear order so we're giving you the chance to purchase the gear you want. Bring it to us by January 20 and we'll send it to the printer. Here's what you need to know:
- This will be a front print with the same logo/size we used on the Nike long sleeve tech shirts. So, make sure what your purchase can be printed on the front (ex: A 1/4 zip or a jacket won't work).
- The color will be the same (blue/white). Keep this in mind when purchasing your gear. Black/white/blue wouldn't be good choices. The printer recommends grey or bright colors.
- Attach a note to your gear with your name, brand of gear, and size. This will keep things from getting mixed up.
This gives you the chance to get what you want (short sleeve/long sleeve/tank) using your favorite brand.
As you go about your week, try not to lose the magic the season so joyfully brings. Do something kind for someone, smile at a stranger (not in a creepy way), and be the happiness our world so desperately needs.
Merry Christmas to you and your family. May your day be filled with love, laughter, and joyful blessings. Stay safe, and eat lots of cookies.
This week has been a great one! We had a great workout on Wednesday with a new member joining us! Welcome, Casey! We are so glad to have you and we look forward to having you train with us!
Our Christmas party at Ocean Zen was Thursday night, and quite frankly, we cannot thank you enough for the kind and thoughtful gifts. We were truly surprised. We hope you all had a good time and enjoyed the food and drinks!
Saturday was the Ugly Christmas Sweater 5k in Lebanon. Congrats to Jani, Debra, and Sharon for some great races! Jani and Debra were 1st in their age groups, and Sharon was 3rd in her group. Way to go ladies.
Sunday brought 2 more races. Ashley, Angela, Laura, and Casey raced the Hot Chocolate 15k/5k in St. Louis. It was a rainy morning, but they put down some great times, and brought home a few PRs!
Angela: 1:38:15 (15k) PR
Ashley: 1:38:20 (15k) PR
Casey: 1:38:20 (15k)
Laura: 31:10 (5k) PR
Jamie and her running partner from Ozark, Sara, raced the Dallas Marathon on Sunday as well. Between Dallas and the Hot Chocolate run, the rest of us were glued to our computers/phones tracking our friends! To make a long story short, we had over 140 group messages between the time we started tracking Jamie and Sara, and the time they went 1-2 through the finish line. Yeah, that's right. Jamie is the Dallas Marathon female champ, and Sara was close behind her in 2nd. Congratulations to both women. You worked incredibly hard, and you deserved this. You both ran solid races - we know, because we were watching :) Sara - we know you don't get to train with us, but we want you to know you feel like a part of the group. You've been an incredible training partner to Jamie, and we were excited to watch your race yesterday. We know your goal is sub 3, and we'll be cheering you on all the way.
So - this week/weekend may have left you feeling slightly inspired. Perhaps it has you looking at your race calendar and planning what you'd like to do next. Maybe it's shoot for your first half. Maybe it's PR in the 5k. Maybe you want to check 26.2 off your bucket list. Perhaps you want to do your first triathlon.Whatever it is, we are here to help. Let us know - the more we know about your goals, the better equipped we will be to help you achieve them.
Don't forget - we will be doing the ShamRox 15k/5k on March 12, 2016 as our next team event. It's one of the most fun 15k races in the area - it's well organized and it's just a good time in general. We hope you'll join us for this. We would like to have as many team members as possible participate. We know many of you are already registered! Still need to register? Click here.
As for other spring races, many of you have already picked a goal race and have started your training. Kudos to you! If you haven't and you'd like some help or suggestions in choosing a race, let us know! Not sure if you could be ready for a certain distance? Ask. We're here to help you. No, it's not too early to start training. Reaching your goals will take hard work and time. So, start now.
For those of you who are new to the team - we will be getting more gear soon! Please see the message in GroupMe about how we will be doing this.
Thank you again for being such an incredible team, and thanks for inviting your friends! We absolutely love seeing how much our team has grown, and is continuing to grow. We hope you are enjoying the workouts, and please know you can always talk to us if you have concerns.
We will see you tonight at Magda's house for our Christmas Lights/Hot Chocolate run. Feel free to bring a friend that might be interested in training with us! We'll meet at her house at 6:30, run 3-5 miles, and then come back and enjoy hot chocolate and cookies together.
Don't forget - Wednesday is at Harke Park. 400m repeats (Sara, care to join us? We know they're your favorite).
In case you missed it, the holidays are here. Seriously. They're here. Thanksgiving is over, and Christmas is this month.
It can be hard to find time to get everything done this time of the year, and the lack of sunlight doesn't help the motivational factor. But hey, at least you don't live in Barrow, Alaska. They experience 51-67 days of total darkness. So - chin up! With events for the kids, Christmas parties, family activities, church activities, and work, time is limited. But, it's important that you make time for yourself and that your workout routine is not forgotten. Remember, when you take care of yourself, you're better able to care for your family and friends, and you are sharper at work as well.
So, here are a few tips for staying healthy and keeping up with your workouts throughout the holidays. These don't all apply to running, but that's okay. Sometimes the holidays can be a fun time to try something new.
1. Stick With Your Plan
- Many of you have training plans. Stick with them. If you get behind, it will be hard to catch up and you will miss crucial workouts. Think ahead - if you want to PR in the spring, you have to work now.
If you still need a plan, let us know. We'll get it ready for you. We have quite a few runners using them now. It's okay to start training now for a Spring race. In fact, its recommended. If you have questions about the plan, ask us.
2. Find a Friend/Be a Friend
- Well, you have TFC417 on Wednesday mornings. Don't stop coming. Keep it up - you need this and your teammates need you. Connect with other runners and plan to run together. It's not cool when you bail on your pals, so if you say you'll be there, show up. They're depending on you, and you need them too. Don't forget you can meet us Monday nights at Harke as well. Just a little more accountability.
3. Sign Up For A Fun Fitness Event With Your Family
- Maybe it's a Reindeer Run. Perhaps it's a a Christmas lights run. Whatever it is, plan it together and use it as a way to bond together while staying active. Maybe it's taking the dog for a walk in the evenings to see which neighbors put up new decorations. Whatever it is, enjoy your time together.
Traveling to see family over the holidays? See if there is something in the area you'd like to try out. Maybe there's a new trail. Perhaps there is a spin studio you've always wanted to try. Maybe there is a 5k going on that weekend, or a new gym with a pool (and sauna). Do these events together - it'll be fun to experience it as a family.
4. Portion Control
- If you don't love Christmas cookies, you're weird. Just kidding, but really. This time of year brings parties galore. This is fantastic as it's a time to get dressed up, head out, and have some fun. Holiday beverages are also the best. It's fine to indulge! Enjoy yourself. But look at your schedule. Do you have a holiday event every night this week? Do you need to indulge at every party? Probably not. Have fun and enjoy the season, but keep your goals in mind. It's certainly not going to kill you to have a glass (or two) of eggnog or a peppermint martini and some cookies. Just remember those things add up, and workouts with a hangover are never fun. Ladies, holiday parties also mean the LBD. Too many cookies can make getting into the LBD a challenge.
5. Beat The Cold
- It's cold and dark in the morning and it's cold and dark in the evening, and like most of us, you have to work during the daytime when it's light. In the morning, warm blankets sound like the best option. When you get off work in the evening, sweats, chili, and Netflix sound so good. So, how do you stay motivated to get out the door? See #2. Meet your friends. Meet your team. Join a group class and try something new. If you don't like it, no big deal. Just give it a shot through the holidays. Cold? Hot Yoga is a fantastic option to warm up.
Oh here's another tip - grab some new gear. Buying new gear for the cold tends to get us out the door. You have to try out your new stuff?
6. Take Care Of Yourself
- Wash your hands. Take your vitamins. Eat well. Getting sick during the holidays is no fun. Plus, if you end up with a bad head cold, pneumonia, or the flu, you're not going to be able to train for a while. Plus, you'll miss out on the fun parties if you're sick! So - get adequate rest and stay hydrated. Just take care of you.
7. Utilize the Snow
- Not everyone likes running on snowy roads. That's okay. The snow can still be a good way to stay fit. Go skiing, snowboarding, head to an ice skating rink (or skate in your driveway). Shovel snow, have a snowball fight, build a snow fort. Don't stay inside - enjoy nature and use it to your benefit.
- If you're traveling over the holidays and know you won't have access to a gym, scope out some routes to run, bring a few resistance bands, and print off a few at home/hotel workouts you'd like to try. You may learn some cool new exercises to add to your routine.
Have a long layover? Many airports have yoga rooms or gyms now. If not, just walk around the airport. It will help keep your blood moving and keep your legs from cramping up on those long flights. Don't forget about the workout room at your hotel. Even if it's small, it can be better than nothing.
The winter season can be a fun time to incorporate new things into your routine. Many of you do not have a goal spring race (oh wait - ShamRox!!!) and will take it easy through the winter. That's okay! You still want to stay active. Some of you (aka Nick) will spend your winter on the dogsled, running dogs in the snow and running in boots and snow clothes (he PRd after a winter of doing this - it's a legit workout).
Whatever you do, enjoy your holiday season. Take care of yourself. Enjoy the time with your family and friends and remember how blessed you are. The holidays can be stressful, but it's a time to remember all we have been given. Be thankful for your health and utilize it. There are many who would give anything to be able to run a mile. Guess what - you have that ability. Use it, refine it, and kick butt with it next spring.
Perhaps your fall racing season didn't go quite as planned for you. Use the lessons you learned and put them to use in your training for the spring.
A HUGE shoutout goes out to our athletes who participated in the St. Jude Marathon Weekend. There is no doubt this is an inspiring race, and a race that makes you think about your life. It truly makes you count your blessings. You all did fantastic and we're proud of you! Thank you for supporting a fantastic organization. Magda, Melissa B., Melissa N., and Keshian all ran the half marathon.
Boston: 2:05:37 PR
Nisbett: 2:12:39 PR
We'll see you on Wednesday at the Civic Center/YMCA!
#thefitclub417 #earnednotgiven #runfasttakechances
We love TFC417. We believe we have an awesome team full of incredible individuals. So, if you've been thinking of joining us, you may be wondering why it would benefit you to join a team. Along the same lines, how can you, as an individual, be the best teammate possible?
Benefits To Being Part Of A Team
1. Meeting like-minded individuals
- It's fun to be around people who enjoy the same things as you. Even if you're not the same pace, you have the same interests. You can talk about Garmins or shoes or races and not be weird.
2. Running will become part of your weekly routine
- Making speed work a part of your weekly routine is key if you want to get faster. That's what we are here for!
3. Receiving advice from experienced runners and coaches
- If you are new, it can help to be around experienced runners and coaches. They can provide insight and advice regarding training, injuries, nutrition, and how to balance a full schedule.
4. Being a part of group races
- If you did the Medical Mile or participated in the Bass Pro Fitness Festival with TFC417, you know how fun this can be. You have the camaraderie of your group, plus it's a great chance to race together and cheer each other on. This is just one reason we'll be doing ShamRox together this Spring! You can do whichever race you want (15k, 5k, Beer Mile) and we'll be there for you. Oh - find your own DD if you're doing the Beer Mile. We like you, but you're not puking in our car.
5. Helping out other/newer runners
- Never forget what it was like to be a beginner. Try not to assume that because you know something, that a new runner will know it too. This is really hard for people who have been running for years. We think that because we know how to calculate paces, that a brand new runner also knows how. Be available to new members and be willing to answer their questions or help direct them to a place where they can find what they need. Let them know you're excited they've joined the sport, and help encourage them in their journey.
6. Giving back to the community through your team
- Teams provide a base group to create events or to sign up to help at charity events. Think about the Poker Runs. Maybe a few members of a team would like to volunteer at a canned food drive or to ring the bell for the Salvation Army. Essentially, the team serves as a great platform to assist the community. Use this. You have great teammates - let's give back.
- No one likes getting up at 4am. Okay, there might be someone. But, on Wednesday mornings when you want to roll over and punch your alarm clock in its stupid blinky face, you get out of bed and show up because you have a team of people who will be there to train with you. Plus, on days it's pouring/cold/hot/you want to watch Netflix, you have a group of people you can text or call to make you go out the door. In fact, some of them may even offer to join you.
8. Lifelong friends
- Running friends can turn into lifelong friends. The things you experience together on a team build a bond that extends beyond running. Cherish these special friendships and work to make them grow both inside and outside of running. These people get you. They understand you. Even if you don't see eye to eye on everything, these are friends that will be there for you.
9. People who don't think you're weird for running around the block to get the last .07
- We've all been there and we get it. Some of us don't care if our watch says 4.97. Some of us do. But we won't make fun of you and we don't think you're weird. We also don't think it's weird when you lose a toenail and we'll be bummed with you when you miss your PR by .09 seconds.
10. You get in better shape and run harder when others are watching
- Think about it. You push harder with your teammates around. Your overall fitness level will improve. You'll notice that you start to pick up the pace on your regular runs, and you'll notice that you start to really "race" on race day.
11. Learn better technique and tips
- Your team provides a great group of people to learn from and to bounce ideas off of. You'll also have a great group of people to make inside jokes with - and they'll probably be kind of inappropriate :)
12. Good references for therapists, doctors, etc.
- Something hurts? Ask a teammate who they see for foot problems. Need a post race massage? Find out who your coach uses. Need new running shoes? Find out where your teammates find theirs so cheap. Not sure what kind of gear to buy? Ask your teammates what works best.
- We hope we don't stress you out. This one may be more applicable if we met after work, but it still applies. Getting together with a group of like-minded teammates provides a sense of happiness and well-being.
14. Hopefully, your team members are positive and supportive.
- You show up to work hard and to be around people who support your goals. You don't want to hear someone complaining constantly. Be positive and support those around you. Sometimes a "Keep it up. You've got this" is all someone needs to hear to push through a plateau in a workout.
15. New ideas
- Looking for a goal race? Need to know if The Chicago Marathon is a good one? Not sure if you're ready for 26.2? Maybe you need ideas on how to get your kids involved with running with you, or you're interested in training for a triathlon. Maybe an organization you're involved with wants to host a race or event. Talk with your team. Get their feedback and advice. If they don't know, they probably know someone who does. Plus, as a team you can come up with new ideas for training, community events, etc.
How To Be A Good Team Member
1. Be reliable
- This is key. Reliability matters. Be on time. Be present. If you cannot make it, that's fine. Life happens and no one is faulting you for that. Just let someone know. Here's a hypothetical example: if you're in Group 2, your group is counting on you. You may not realize it, but the back person in group 2 is working their butt off to be the front person. Be there. Make them work. Help them get better. It's the same way that you've started to bond with your individual groups. They're counting on you to be there. They want to run with you, to push you, to train with you, and to support you.
2. Be positive both to yourself and to other runners
- Negativity spreads, and it breeds more negativity. Be positive about the workouts. Be positive toward your team members. A lot of work and time goes into planning the workouts. Negativity toward the workouts is not only disrespectful to your coaches, but it is disrespectful to your teammates who have shown up to really work and give it their all. Plus, it mentally affects your teammates as well.
- If you have an issue, concern, problem, or happy thing to share - communicate it well. Discuss your issues, share your joys. We want to help you, and we want to celebrate with you. If you have a problem with a teammate or coach, address it. Don't let it fester. Teammates are there to be supportive and to learn and grow together. Be an adult, and communicate with each other. Tell other runners they're doing a good job - work together, and talk to each other. Not only will this help the team grow, it will help your communication skills grow as well.
- Listen to each other and to your coaches. If you think you know a better way to do something, see #3 and communicate. That being said, do not undermine others. No one is perfect - let's learn together.
5. Don't be a know-it-all: Be willing to learn and admit when you're wrong
- No one knows everything. Part of life is being able to learn, adapt, and admit failure and defeat. If you're wrong, it's okay. But don't pretend to know everything. This inhibits both personal growth as well as team growth.
6. Participate and try new things
- Be present. If you're going to come, really show up. Be willing to give new workouts a try. Are they going to be hard? Yes. Try them. Be there. Work. (If you're really hurt - tell us).
- If your coach or teammate suggests something helpful to you, be willing to give it a shot. We wouldn't suggest it if we didn't think it would be beneficial to you. Cooperate with your teammates.
8. Be flexible
- If things don't go your way, it's okay. Be flexible and willing to learn. Be willing to grow.
9. Be a problem solver
- Situations and days aren't always perfect. Problems arise. Be a part of the solution, not the problem. Be creative and share your ideas.
10. Show that you care and be respectful of others
- Treat your fellow team members with respect and courtesy. Be understanding and willing to help them out if needed. Do not put other members down. They're working as hard as you are. Remember, "fast" is a relative term. Don't think that because you're running a 7:15 mile that the person running 9:30 is getting off easy.They're working just as hard as you. They're trying to get faster too. That being said, you don't have to baby your teammates. Push them in the same way you want to be pushed. You're there to make each other better, not to coddle.
Thank you for being a part of our team. We appreciate you and we value the skills and knowledge each of you bring to the table. We hope that if you're considering joining us, that this will be the push you need to come join us on Wednesday morning. We'll be at the YMCA/Civic Center on Wednesday, December 9. You can also check out our FB page for more info, or email us at email@example.com.
Don't forget about our Christmas Lights run on Monday, December 14 at 6:30pm. We'll start and finish at Magda's house and we'll visit and have hot chocolate after the run. We'll run 3-5 miles. Please feel free to bring a friend that might be interested in training with us. If you need directions, let us know.
#thefitclub417 #earnednotgiven #runfasttakechances
Who Picks the Topics?
Each week, we notice different things. We try to incorporate the questions we are receiving or the training issues we are noticing into our post(s) for the week. If there is something you'd like us to cover, let us know!